This unit does research, technology development and technology transfer to improve the efficiency, quality and safety of red meat produced in Southern African from rangeland and feedlots. We have a modern research feedlot with 48 pens, each holding ten animals; 104 individual stanchions for data collection on individual animals and a dedicated metabolic stable which holds 22 animals for trials with cannulated weaner calves.

Furthermore, we present short courses and do least-cost diet formulations, diet evaluations, feasibility studies and business planning.

Our unit works closely with the Meat Industry Centre. This is equipped with a D15 experimental abattoir that facilitates specialised research techniques or procedures that could otherwise not be performed in normal commercial abattoirs and provides a controlled environment for researchers to standardise procedures. Their program is run by dedicated, well-trained and experienced scientists, technicians and support personnel, backed by competent meat processing, analytical and microbiological laboratories. The unit addresses meat quality and consumer safety issues, and taste panel evaluations are done to ensure consumer acceptability.

We do client specific research where we are able to measure performance parameters such as growth, feed intake, carcass weight and carcass classification, from these we determine feed conversion and carcass characteristics. A Rand value can be placed on these parameters and the products like feed additives or medicinal treatments tested can be evaluated in terms of economic benefit below or above a set standard. A recent tested feed additive improved dressing % by more than 2%, resulting in a higher carcass yield and income for the producer.


Animal experiments and meat quality evaluations are done on a client specific base and the execution of these experiments in terms of cost need to be negotiated.

The well attended feedlot course, which had more than 400 participants was cancelled. However, the course did result in a book which is now available at our library bookshop.

Diet formulation will cost R 400.00 per diet, and consultations will cost from R 400.00 depending on the amount of time spent.


Meet our Staff

Dr Klaas-Jan Leeuw

Dr Marumo Malebana
Ms Lemohang G Makhanya
(Research Technician)

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